Monday, 9 May 2011

The Things You Learn When You Write Your Own History


I've been writing my blog for two weeks and my recollections about Cameron and his fight with Pneumococcal Meningitis is growing bit by bit. Something I did not foresee is happening and has taken me by surprise. People are starting to talk about their memories of when Cameron got sick and I am learning things I didn't know.

When you live through a life changing experience it is all very much about you. You are coping with something you are not prepared for and you don't have the luxury of a clear mind to think things through calmly and to observe what is going on around you like you would normally. You're in shock and reality has left the building.

I've written about the trauma of phoning my parents to come down to Perth. I didn't know that Michael's Mum had been asked by the ICU staff to call  my Mum that morning. She couldn't do it because like me she knew she couldn't lie to my mother. I have my suspicions that my parents are going to add more to that story as well. Michael's sister remembers the staff asking her Mum to make that call.

Michael's Mum told me about her conversation with the staff and how she asked them if Cameron was going to die and they told her they didn't know. She asked how Cameron had ended up with Meningitis and again they said they didn't know. They warned everyone, apparently, to be very careful with anything they said because you can't take back words. Clearly they were sharing knowledge learned from other families. 

The other thing that has come to light is when some of our friends were told that Cameron was sick. It has to be remembered that this was before mobile phones and email. These days you would step aside for 30 seconds write a text and send it out to all your family and friends. Within a minute everyone would know what was happening. It wasn't that easy 15 years ago.

A friend told me a couple of days ago that they weren't contacted until day nine. They were shocked to find out Cameron was so sick and wanted to come to us immediately but was asked not to because it was family only. I was totally shocked. I had no memory of this. I would have wanted to see her. It is amazing how something so long ago can bring up such strong emotions. I felt guilty and incredibly sad because our friendship with our inner circle of friends is like a second family and it hurt to realize how painful that must have been for them.

I'm sure as I continue on this journey I am going to learn more and discover different points of view. My story will grow and change as memories are unlocked and other people fill in knowledge we did not know but this is a journey I want to take. Some of these memories may be painful but I think it will be worth it.

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